May Day March 2017

May 1 Shut Trump Down



Join us on May Day to march for immigrant and worker rights!
AROC will be marching in Oakland. Meet us at Fruitvale Plaza in Oakland in front of Reem’s at 3pm and March to San Antonio Park. 

3 pm Rally at Fruitvale Plaza
(Fruitvale Bart Station)
3526 San Leandro St, Oakland, California 94601:

San Francisco
8 am Protest at ICE
Immigration and Customs Enforcement
630 Sansome St, San Francisco, California 94111

11 am rally and march starting at Justin Herman Plaza
Justin Herman Plaza
Embarcadero Center, San Francisco, California 94111

San Jose
1 pm at Mexican Heritage Plaza :

4 pm gather at Meadow Homes Park
5 pm march
6 pm rally at Todos Santos Plaza

Santa Rosa
11 am at Santa Rosa Junior College Bertolini Hall

For more resources on how to participate, posters and to find an event near you, visit and

All Out to Berkeley City Council: Stop Urban Shield


In an unprecedented move, the Berkeley City Council is considering fully withdrawing their support for local agency participation in the Urban Areas Security Initiative and Urban Shield. This meeting is critical for the fight against Urban Shield. A decision in favor of pulling out of Urban Shield by the Berkeley City Council paves the way for other cities in the Bay Area to do the same.

Date: Tuesday, April 25th at 7:00pm

Location:  Berkeley City Council  Berkeley City Council Chambers, 2134 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way between Allston and Addison (near downtown Berkeley BART)

Look for more information in the coming days about calling Berkeley City Council members to urge them to support ending Urban Shield!

CALL IN DAYS: Tomorrow, April 20th and Monday, April 24th, Call Berkeley City Council and demand that they end police militarization. Here is sample call in language and contact info:

“Dear Councilperson _________,

I am writing to urge you and all Berkeley City Council members to take leadership in putting an end to Berkeley’s engagement with the militarization of police and disaster preparedness represented by the annual Urban Shield exercises and weapons expo, funded by DHS through the Urban Areas Security Initiative. Urban Shield’s emphasis on SWAT teams as the response to emergencies – including natural disasters – as well as the extremely militarized scenarios, diminishes resources for responding to the ordinary emergencies community members face every day. Berkeley should not be participating in war games funded by the Department of Homeland Security, which involve not only nine Bay Area counties, but teams from around the United States.That is why I ask you to exercise your leadership and reject any future funding from UASI, Berkeley’s participation in Urban Shield, and to stand with Alameda County communities, and people across the country.



District 1/Linda Miao/(510) 981-7110/ /
District 2/Cheryl Davila/ (510) 981-7120/
District 3/  Ben Bartlett/ (510) 981-7130/
District 4/ Kate Harrison / (510) 981-7140 /
District 5 / Sophie Hahn/ 510) 981-7150 /
District 6 / Susan Wengraf / (510) 981-7160 /
District 7/ Kris Worthington / (510) 981-7170 /

District 8/  Lori Droste / (510) 981-7180 /

Here is the facebook event with more information

Statement on Bombing of Afghanistan

Statement on Bombing of Afghanistan April 2017

On Thursday April 13, 2017, President Trump dropped a GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast (MOAB), the largest non-nuclear bomb that is referred to as the “mother of all bombs,” on Nangarhar Province in the eastern region of Afghanistan. The number of civilian casualties is unknown, but the blast radius would have been a mile wide with a towering mushroom cloud. Afghans who heard the blast, and who have already endured decades of war, thought that the world had ended.

We are saddened and outraged by this blatant disregard for human life in the hollow pursuit of aggressive control of the region. We understand that this bombing has nothing to do with stabilizing the region and everything to do with the new administration’s advertising of U.S. military might and U.S. domination of Southwest Asia and the Middle East in the wake of the ongoing wars, bombings and airstrikes in Syria, Yemen and Iraq. The war in Afghanistan is the longest in the imperial history of the U.S. and it has brought untold suffering to the Afghan people, who constitute one of the largest refugee populations in the world.

We express our solidarity with all peoples displaced and terrorized by U.S. military interventions. We condemn the continued U.S. drone strikes, bombings, and military occupation of Afghanistan and the Af-Pak border region that are part of a long history of U.S. imperialism in Afghanistan and around the world. The U.S. reign of terror in Afghanistan has continued under both Democrat and Republican regimes, and has involved secret operations, massacres of civilians, torture, imprisonment, devastation of the environment, support for corrupt leaders, and client regimes, all emerging out of the history of the CIA’s role in producing the Islamist forces that became the Taliban. MOAB now takes its place in the tragic history of bombs dropped by the U.S. against Third World countries. These war crimes continue unchecked, their victims remain forgotten and unnamed, and the refugees they displace are turned back at our borders.

We stand in solidarity with the Afghan people, and all peoples facing war, and recognize our responsibility as people living in the United States to protest, resist, raise awareness, and honor the lives lost. We promise to continue our struggles for liberation with a framework of internationalism and anti-imperialism so that we may never forget that our stories intersect and our fates are tied together.

Alliance of South Asians Taking Action (ASATA)
Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC)

Add your name

On Palestinian Political Prisoners’ Day

Palestinian Political Prisoners Day
Develop people, not prisons!

#FreePalestinianPoliticalPrisoners      #PalestinianPrisonersDay         #FreeEmAll

Today, Monday April 17th, marks Palestinian Political Prisoners Day, a day where the Palestinian people and supporters of justice and liberation for Palestine all over the world express their support to Palestinian political prisoners and stand in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners of freedom.   
In Palestine, political imprisonment is a central feature of Israeli Apartheid, with over 20% of Palestinians facing imprisonment in their lifetime. According to Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, there are currently 6,500 Palestinians held in Israeli prisons, jails and detention centers, including approximately 500 children. These people are imprisoned under a separate and unequal set of laws, applicable only to Palestinians. These include administrative detention– a practice where Palestinians are held without trial, charges or conviction and prosecution in Israeli military courts– where 99% of cases end in a conviction. Furthermore, Israel is the only country in the world that prosecutes children in military courts and routinely imprison children as young as 12. These dehumanizing and illegal practices are meant to erode the Palestinian will to resist occupation and repress their struggle for freedom.  

In the US, political repression and imprisonment are part of a larger system known as the prison industrial complex (PIC) which also includes, surveillance, policing, and sentencing. Though the context, names, and details may differ, these manifestations of the PIC in other countries are connected to the US PIC in aim and, often, in practice, as exemplified by the case of Rasmea Odeh. There are currently dozens of political prisoners incarcerated in the US for their political activism in the anti-imperialist struggles and liberation movements of racially oppressed groups during the 1960s and 1970s. Many of these freedom fighters have served over 40 years in prison, yet remain unapologetic in their commitment to the fight for racial, economic and social justice.

AROC’s understanding of the global nature of political imprisonment compels us to integrate an analysis of the PIC, in the US as well as other countries, into our work and to fight against its impacts in all the work that we do. AROC:

  • Recognizes that forces involved in attempting to “normalize” the Israeli occupation of Palestine are also at work attempting to normalize the use of the prison industrial complex in the US for containing, repressing, and eliminating aspects of the communities in which Arab people and people of color live and work.
  • Rejects imprisonment from the political imprisonment of Palestinians and other Arabs to the imprisonment of millions of poor people, people of color, and political dissidents in the United States.
  • Stands in solidarity with political prisoners and all community members locked up in prisons and jails locally and internationally, and we invite our community to join the call to end impunity and to free all political prisoners!

Join us in a social media campaign called for by our friends at Addameer. Share this message widely on April 17th:

Palestinian Human Rights Defenders are #NotATarget #PalestinianPrisonersDay #FreeEmAll

Support Addameer’s campaigns, Stop Administrative Detention and Human Rights Defenders.

Support the people of Syria. Stand against war.

Support the people of Syria. Stand against war.

The ongoing wars in Syria, Yemen, and Iraq have produced human suffering on an unimaginable scale, with hundreds of thousands killed, millions displaced, and many millions more continuing to face starvation, sickness, poverty, and violence.

Consistent with longstanding US foreign policy, the Trump administration has demonstrated a commitment to furthering US imperialism by bolstering the military budget to nearly half the total federal budget, now 1.45 trillion dollars. This continued aggression, the US bombing of Syria, and continuing military escalation in Yemen, Syria, and Iraq will only lead to further the destabilization, violence, displacement, and suffering that the US, Apartheid Israel, and their western allies have sown in the region for decades.

The Arab Resource and Organizing Center stands with all victims of these conflicts. As an organization committed to the liberation and self-determination of all oppressed people, we recognize that the mass uprisings that precipitated the conflicts in Syria and Yemen were genuine demonstrations of popular anger against corruption and repression, the absence of mechanisms for political empowerment, and the continuing impoverishment of the Arab working class through ever-expanding imperialist and neoliberal policies.

Syria today is devastatingly unrecognizable from what it was in 2011. Through covert and overt foreign intervention of the US and its allies on the one hand, to the two years and counting of Russian strikes on the other, Syria and its people became the ground for an all-out proxy war for world powers. These interventions have only served the geopolitical, financial, and military interests of these powers, against the interests, dignity, and livelihood of the Syrian people.

AROC firmly rejects the oppressive and exploitive role that Western or Gulf powers, and the US in particular, have played in the lives of Arab people. The long and bloody history of US colonialism of the Americas, interventions in Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the Arab World, its unwavering support for the Zionist state of Israel, backing for the Saudi military bombardment of Yemen, direct and indirect financing of right-wing hardline militias in Syria, and destruction of Libya and Iraq point clearly to ambitions opposed to the struggles of oppressed people. We also hold the US responsible for historically playing a central role, both directly and indirectly, in the rise of extremist groups to quell popular movements in Latin America, Africa, and Asia – a trend continued in the Arab World with the rise of groups like Daesh in Iraq and Syria. We stand with those enduring such violence, the latest carried out by Daesh in Egypt against two Coptic Churches on Palm Sunday, killing 44 people. Egyptian President Sisi has already exploited this tragedy to expand his repressive rule by declaring a state of emergency for three months – repression funded by the US.

AROC therefore both condemns the brutality of the repressive regimes in the Arab World, and stands against the imperial powers that seek to replace them, choosing instead to side with the Arab people themselves and their legitimate demands for a future free of the oppressive hand of any regime – local or international – that seeks to subdue or undermine them.

Resist War
For us in the US, what does solidarity with Arab people look like during such devastation? Though we may not have all the answers, we know this for certain. That our freedom and self determination relies on building a broad movement that connects the struggle against racism, xenophobia, and economic oppression in the US to war and occupation across the world. We cannot resist the Muslim Ban, ICE raids, attacks on women and LGBTQ people, economic devastation of communities, and plunder of the environment without taking action against war, and the displacement, violence, and instability that it imposes on millions of people in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Arab World.

Hands off Syria. Hands off Yemen. Hands off Iraq. Self-determination and dignity for all oppressed people. 

For more resources visit the Jadaliyya’s Syria roundup page.



On Tuesday January 10th the Stop Urban Shield (SUS) Coalition mobilized a powerful showing of over 100 community members at the Alameda County Board of Supervisors meeting. Opening with a powerful rally, the SUS Coalition had a strong and inspiring presence against the Sheriff’s efforts to continue his violent, oppressive, and highly militarized SWAT training and weapons expo. We joined forces with the Alameda County Jail Fight Coalition, which was also there in force to stop the expansion of Santa Rita Jail, and made clear that the struggles against policing and imprisonment are fundamentally linked, and must be fought in tandem with each other.

For the last several months, the Coalition has been organizing to push the Board of Supervisors to refuse funding for Urban Shield. We have delivered testimony during public comment at meetings and created a report to help educated the Board on how they can shift their priorities and invest in true emergency preparedness and disaster responses that support communities. In October we alerted the Supervisors to the upcoming opportunities to refuse the Sheriff’s bid for Urban Shield funding, even though the Sheriff misled the Board, lying about intentions to receive funds to host the expo in 2018. For months we have requested meetings with each of the Supervisors to speak directly about our concerns, yet all refused to meet with us except for Richard Valle, who finally agreed at the eleventh hour on Monday.

On Tuesday, over 50 people representing 30 organizations spoke against Urban Shield and gave powerful testimony on the impacts of militarized policing on immigrant and Muslim communities and communities of color (Twitter feed account here). Our testimony broadly and succinctly challenged the legitimacy of police as emergency first responders, the collusion of natural disaster preparedness and militarization, and the continuation of a program that would expand the Trump regime’s capacity to wage war on our local communities. We were coordinated in our efforts and our talking points, despite the fact that the Board refused to allow the Coalition time for a counter presentation and even cut public comment to one minute per person. We presented a petition signed by more than 1500 Alameda County residents urging the Board to oppose Urban Shield. We demanded that the Supervisors refuse funding for Urban Shield, or at the very least, postpone their decision until all of them met with us.

Tuesday’s meeting revealed the power of our organizing. Due to pressure from the SUS Coalition, the Board of Supervisors requested a presentation from the Sheriff whereas in the past they have simply rubber stamped the funding. Given the threat of our efforts against Urban Shield, the Sheriff’s department felt compelled to gather testimony in his defense and lay out 2017 guidelines, including banning any vendors from the weapons expo that display racist material. Following questions from a Supervisor that the SUS Coalition delivered, the Sheriff even quickly accepted a ban on having international police units from countries with ongoing human rights violations. Though we do not believe that these guidelines will make Urban Shield any less destructive or harmful, they, along with his cabal of cops in attendance to support Urban Shield, show that he was terrified our communities were close to bringing the program to an end.

Shamefully, and despite the Sheriff’s blatant lies, roundabout answers, and our show of massive opposition with a strong and clear message, the Supervisors voted to support the Sheriff’s bid for Urban Shield in 2017. Yet this campaign is not over. We’re inspired that the organizing and resistance of our communities and allies were able to put the largest SWAT training in the world completely on the defensive. While the Supervisors voted to approve Urban Shield for fall 2017, we remain committed to strengthening our fight, continuing our struggle against Urban Shield, and ultimately winning.

TAKE ACTION NOW: Call Board of Supervisors Today, Rally Tomorrow.

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On Tuesday January 10, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors will decide whether or not to allow the county Sheriff to receive funding for the Urban Shield police war games and weapons expo.

Tell Alameda County Board of Supervisors: No to Militarization! Vote No on Urban Shield!

Fight for stronger, safer, and healthier communities.

Take these three steps to end Urban Shield now:

1. Call the Board of Supervisors Today, January 9th. Tell them to vote no on Urban Shield!

Please spread the word and encourage your friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors to let the Board know, we want and end to Urban Shield now! Use the script and contact below or click here.

Sample script:

Dear Supervisor _________,

I am calling/writing to urge you and all Alameda County Board of Supervisors to take leadership in putting an end to the militarization of police and the militarization of disaster preparedness in Alameda County. On Tuesday, you will be asked to decide whether to authorize the Sheriff to enter into an agreement with the Department of Homeland Security’s Urban Areas Security Initiative. This agreement will give the Sheriff access to funding for the notorious Urban Shield training and weapons expo. As you are surly aware, the divisive election of Donald Trump has raised concerns about an increase in militarized policing and attacks on immigrants, Arabs and Muslims, communities of color, and poor people. We call on you to stand with the communities you represent against such harm. Ending the divisive, dangerous, and xenophobic Urban Shield training and weapons expo is one significant way to do this. Tomorrow, we urge you to say no to the authorization of any funding for Urban Shield. Thank you.

Supervisor Haggerty // (510) 272-6691
Supervisor Valle // (510) 272-6692
Supervisor Chan // (510)272-6693
Supervisor Miley // (510)272-6694
Supervisor Carson // (510)272-6695

2. Bring yourself and your people out to a Rally and Press Conference on Tuesday, January 10th against Urban Shield. Afterward, pack the boardroom to show that our communities reject Urban Shield. We will meet at the Alameda County Administration Building at 1221 Oak St, Oakland, CA 94612.  Please share the Facebook event page widely!


3. Are you an Alameda County Resident? Sign our petition, and share it with your networks.

* * * * *

By listening to the clear and powerful voice of Alameda County Residents, the Board of Supervisors has the opportunity to shift away from the cynical fear mongering at the heart of Urban Shield and toward an approach that responds to genuine Bay Area disaster threats by investing in health, food security, emergency shelter, and community resilience.

For more info, visit:

Call to Action from Arab Youth

AROC Youth Reflect on Militarization, Zionism and Repression
Interview with AYO youth leaders, Nora Abedelal and Nour Bouhassoun

Nora Abedelal and Nour Bouhassoun
What are your thoughts on this moment of ongoing attacks on Arabs and Muslims, targeting of Palestinian activism, and criminalization of Black and Brown communities in light of the Movement for Black Lives Platform, and the growing movement against Zionism?Nour: Oppressed people have always stood up for one another. That isn’t something new. The Movement For Black Lives platform illustrates that Black people are demanding their right to self-determination. This requires standing against all forms of oppression including the criminalization of Black and Brown youth, against surveillance, against war, and the attempts to control and militarize our communities.The platform is not just an expression of solidarity with Palestinians. It is more than that. It talks about the real connections between local and global struggles against State violence and recognizes that standing together to fight for economic, social and political power is how we can all achieve self-determination. Zionism is not oppressing one community; it oppresses all communities of color and poor people and helps the US to exercise repression locally and globally.

Nora: While we are seeing a lot of communities showing solidarity with one another, we are also facing a lot of backlash with the rise of Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and conservatism in general. We know all of this reflects standard US domestic and foreign policy. So with more solidarity actions comes an increase in policing, surveillance and militarism. That’s why I am not surprised when I learn about events like Urban Shield. These are the ways they try to crush people rising up and taking action.

How can we continue to build on the connections being made between local policing and global repression and continue to fight back?

Nora: We have to understand that when we are engaged in this kind of work, it is inherently in solidarity with other communities because we all suffer from the same systems of oppression; the same systems trying to repress and control us.

We should be investing back into our communities through education, leadership development, and skill building as opposed to body cameras and prettier prisons. I have been seeing a lot of posts on social media about police giving out ice cream and playing basketball with youth. When people see that as a way to solve the problem, then they don’t understand that these are systemic issues that need long term solutions, and require grassroots organizing.

Nour:  People in this moment should know the difference between a tool and a strategy. Some of our youth are focusing too much on social media, which is a great tool, but not a strategy. It doesn’t bring people together on the ground. So what we need is to organize together. We should think of ways to engage in local efforts that weaken these systems and act as a model for the future.

There is a lot of attention on electoral politics now. Even though as we have witnessed for years, no matter who the president is, our conditions remain the same. I wish people would not see those in power as the problem solvers. Problem solvers are those most impacted.

How does stopping Urban Shield serve as a strategy for our movements and the health and well being of our communities?

Nour: Military tactics and training are used against an enemy. And when they train local police with these tactics they are training the police to treat our communities like enemies. When they purchase Israeli weapons and surveillance technology, and learn from Israeli military tactics, they are learning how to treat our communities here the same way the Israeli army oppresses Palestinians. Militarization creates a culture of fear and distrust and reinforces racism, encouraging informants and division in our community. Stopping Urban Shield is a way for our communities to demonstrate that we believe policing and militarization are not okay. If we can stop Urban Shield, we can encourage others to continue to challenge these systems in the face of repression.

Nora: I remember the police came to my house with an M16 rifle. And that is because events like Urban Shield normalize militarization. The police have historically made our communities uncomfortable and have historically repressed and targeted our communities. When I see police at protest with tanks and big guns I think of events like Urban Shield that allow these kinds of things to happen. Stopping Urban Shield would mean that instead of investing in militarization we would be able to invest in our communities. It also helps us take the focus away from individual gun violence, and instead remind people of the role that State violence plays in our everyday lives.

How do folks get involved?

Nora: Show up on September 9th in Pleasanton! Contact the Stop Urban Shield coalition for information on carpools from the Bay Area and Los Angeles.

Nour: Organize meetings to learn more about Urban Shield and the ways that we can redirect funding towards community based solutions.

For more information on how you can take Nour and Nora’s lead on mobilizing to stop Urban Shield, visit

عملنا يتزايد ونحن بحاجة الى دعم مجتمعنا

عملنا يتزايد ونحن بحاجة الى دعم مجتمعنا، كل الشكر لكرمكم الذي جعل عملنا هذا ممكناً

مما لا شك فيه بأن هذه السنة تخللها العديد من الصعوبات، لكن في الوقت ذاته كانت ايضاً سنة مفعمة بالنشاطات مليئة بالانتصارات لكل الناس التى تناضل من اجل العدالة بالعالم. مع كل الصعوبات التى واجهتنا سواء كمركز او كمجتمع، نحن نعتقد بأننا من خلال عملنا سوياً حقننا ما كنا نسعى لتحقيقه.

نرجو منك مشاهدة هذا الفيديو الذي يسلط الضوء على عملنا والنشاطات التى قمنا بها في المركز العربي للمصادر والتنظيم عام 2015

Watch the Video

نتطلع للعمل في السنة القادمة ونحن ملتزمين بالاستمرار في تراكم هذه الانجازات، وهذه الانجازات لن تتحقق بدون المساهمات المستمرة من ابناء مجتمعنا.

لقد قمنا بنجاح بتمرير القرار المتعلق بمسارات اللغة العربية في مدارس سان فرانسيسكو ونتطلع قدماً بالمضي مع مجتمعنا حتى يصبح مشروع اللغة العربية واقعاً. اما على مستوى عمل الفريق لقد قمنا بتوظيف موظفين اثنين يعملان بدوام كامل من اجل الحفاظ على زيادة قدرتنا على العمل، والمضي بعملنا قدماً نحو الأمام.

نهدف من خلال دعمكم للوصول الى مبلغ 65000 دولار .

اذا كنت ترغب بدعمنا :

- من الممكن ان تكون الممول الشهري عند مساهمتك ب 20 او 50 او 100 دولار شهرياً.

- من الممكن ان تتبرع لمرة واحدة.

- من الممكن ان تنظم حملة لجمع التبرعات لدعم المركز.

عملنا يتزايد ونحن بحاجة الى دعم محتمعنا، كل الشكر لكرمكم الذي جعل عملنا هذا ممكناً